Towering skyscrapers and steamy jungles. Huge shopping complexes and vast industrial areas right next door to the colourful cultures of Little India and Chinatown. Thoroughly planned and controlled – no gum-chewing allowed – but wide open for business.
Singapore is youthful, all-new, futuristic, and over-the-top. Compared to Singapore, our hometown (Victoria) is a shabby place – we are struggling just to get a bridge replaced!
Singapore has a sticky climate – 45º Celsius was the “real feel” temperature as we sweated our way along three of Singapore’s best walks: the Southern Ridges trail (10 km), the Treetop Canopy Walk (12 km), and the Pulau Ubin Tree Trail (6 km). The efficient, air-conditioned metro system allowed us to cool off between destinations. Wildlife sightings (this is for the grandchildren): monkeys that snatch food from children, a huge snake, monitor lizards, assorted colourful birds, and wild pigs with piglets.
En route to Singapore our seats were personal pods — individual space capsules with a cockpit and a seven-foot bed. Business class eases the pain, but it’s still a long haul from Victoria to Singapore – 3 flights and 33 hours elapsed time. After three pre-cruise days in Singapore, March 22 was embarkation day, and we are now aboard the elegant Insignia, our home for the next 109 days.
“It’s great to have friends,” said Doug, as our neighbour David dropped us off at the airport. David, Lindsay, and Barbara are checking on our condo while we are away, and daughter Kirsten is managing our mail. Thank you all! We have dozens of new shipmate friends, and today is only day two of the cruise. Three people we will see every day are Khrystyna and Daisy, our room stewards, and Marco, the barista.